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Kenya Copyright Board announces implementation of new levy

The tax will be effected on September 15, 2023.

The Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) has announced plans to start charging Kenyans Blank Tape Levy.

According to a statement Monday, the Blank Tape Levy is a nominal fee imposed on the sale of blank media and devices such as CDs, DVDs, USB drives, and smartphones, which can be used to make personal copies of copyright content.

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The tax will be effected on September 15, 2023.

‘Kenya Copyright Board wishes to inform the public of the commencement of the implementation of the Blank Tape Levy with effect from September 15, 2023 pursuant to sections 28(3)(6) and 30(6) of the Copyright Act and the second schedule part B of the Copyright Regulations 2020,” KECOBO stated.

KECOBO said the reason the levy was imposed is to compensate copyright holders for potential revenue lost when individuals make private copies of their copyrighted works, such as music, movies or software.

They added that private copying allows individuals to make personal backups or copies of copyrighted material for their own use, such as making a backup of a music CD or copying a movie to a personal device.

The levy is paid by the manufacturers or importers of the blank media or devices.

The automation of the process of collecting the Blank Tape Levy (BTL) has been finalized on the Kenya Trade Network Agency Trade Facilitation Platform TFP). All imports for items subject to the Blank Tape Levy, will attract the BTL fee with effect from September 16, 2023.

Meanwhile, KECOBO added that the automation of the process of collecting the levy has been finalized on the Kenya Trade Network Agency Trade Facilitation Platform TFP), all imports for items subject to the Blank Tape Levy, will attract the BTL fee with effect from September 16, 2023.

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